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THE GENERAL GRAND ROYAL ARCH

CONSTITUTION,

For the United States of America, as revised, amended and

ratified at a meeting of the General Grand Chapter, held in the City of New-York, on the 6th day of June, A. D: 1816-Anno Lucis 5816.

ARTICLE I.

OF THE GENERAL GRAND CHÁPTER.

Sect. 1. There shall be a General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons for the United States of America, which shall be holden as is hereinafter directed, and shall consist of a general grand high priest, deputy general grand high priest, general grand king, general grand scribe, secretary, treasurer, chaplain, and marshal; and likewise of the several grand and deputy grand high priests, kings and scribes, for the time being; of the several state grand chapters, under the jurisdiction of this general grand chapter; and of the past general grand high priests, deputy general grand high priests, kings, and scribes of the said general grand chapter; and the aforesaid officers, or their proxies, shall be the only members and voters in said general grand chapter. And no person shall be constituted a proxy, unless he be a present or past officer of this or a state grand chapter.

SBCT. 2. The general grand chapter shall meet Septennially, on the second Thursday in September, for the choice of officers, and other business: dating from the second Thursday in September, A. D. 1805, at such place as may, from time to time, be appointed.

Sect. 3. A special meeting of the general grand chapter shall be called whenever the general grand high priest, deputy general grand high priest, general grand king, and general grand scribe, or any two of them, may deem it ne, cessary; and also whenever it may be required by a majority of the grand chapters of the states aforesaid, provided such requisition be made known in writing, by the said grand chapters respectively, to the general grand high priest, deputy general grand high priest, king or scribe. And it shall be the duty of the said general oflicers, and they are each of them severally authorized, empowered and

directed, upon receiving official notice of such requisition from a majority of the grand chapters aforesaid, to appoint a time and place of meeting, and notify each of the state grand chapters thereof accordingly.

Sect. 4. It shall be incumbent on the general grand high priest, deputy general grand high priest, general grand king, and general grand scribe, severally, to improve and perfect themselves in the sublime Arts, and work of Mark Masters, Past Masters, most excellent Masters, and Royal Arch Masons; to make themselves masters of the several masonic lectures and antient charges—to consult with each other, and with the grand and deputy grand high priests, kings and scribes of the several states aforesaid, for the purpose of adopting measures suitable and proper for diffusing a knowledge of the said lectures and charges, and an uniform mode of working in the several chapters and lodges throughout this jurisdiction; and the better to effect this laudable purpose, the aforesaid general grand officers are severally hereby authorized, and empowered, to visit and preside in any and every chapter of royal arch masons, and lodge of most excellent, past, or mark master masons, throughout the said states, and to give such instructions and directions as the good of the fraternity may require; always adhering to the antient landmarks of the order.

SECT. 5. In all cases of the absence of any officer from any body of masons, instituted or holden by virtue of this constitution, the officer next in rank shall succeed his superior; unless through courtesy said officer should decline in favor of a past superior officer present. And in case of the absence of all the officers from any legal meeting of either of the bodies aforesaid, the members present, according to seniority and abilities, shall fill the several offices.

SECT. 6. In every chapter or lodge of masons, instituted or holden by virtue of this constitution, all questions (except upon the admission of members or candidates) shall be determined by a majority of votes; the presiding officer for the time being, being entitled to vote, if a member; and in case the votes should at any time be equally divided, the presiding officer as aforesaid, shall give the casting vote.

Sect. 7. The general grand royal arch chapter, shall be competent (on concurrence of two thirds of its members present) at any time hereafter, to revise, amend and alter this constitution.

SECT. 8. In case any casualty should at any time hereafter', prevent the septennial election of officers, the several

general grand officers shall sustain their respective offices until successors are duly elected and qualified.

SECT. 9. The general grand high priest, deputy general grand high priest, general grand king, and general grand scribe, shall severally have power and authority to institute new royal arch chapters, and lodges of the subordinate degrees, in any state in which there is not a grand chapter regularly established. But no new chapter shall be instituted in any state wherein there is a chapter or chapters holden under the authority of this constitution, without a recommendation from the chapter nearest the residence of the petitioners. The fees for instituting a new royal arch chapter, with the subordinate degrees, shall be ninety dollars; and for a new mark master's lodge, twenty dollars; exclusive of such compensation to the grand secretary, as the grand officers aforesaid may deem reasonable.

ARTICLE II.

OF THE STATE GRAND ROYAL ARCH CHAPTERS.

SECT. 1. The state grand chapters shall severally consist of a grand high priest, deputy grand high priest, grand king, grand scribe, grand secretary, grand treasurer, grand chaplain, and grand marshall, and likewise of the high priests, kings and scribes, for the time being, of the several chapters over which they shall respectively preside, and of the past grand and deputy grand high priests, kings and scribes of the said grand chapters; and the said enumerated officers, or their proxies, shall be the only members and voters in the said grand chapters respectively.

Sect. 2. The state grand chapters shall severally be holden at least once in every year, at such times and places as they shall respectively direct; and the grand, or deputy grand high priests respectively, for the time being, may at any time, call a special meeting, to be holden at such place as they shall severally think proper to appoint.

Sect. 3. The officers of the state grand chapters shall be chosen annually, by ballot, at such time and place as the said grand chapters shall respectively direct.

Secr. 4 The several state grand chapters (subject to the provisions of this constitution) shall have the sole government, and superintendance, of the several royal arch chapters, and lodges of most excellent, past and mark master masons, within their respective jurisdictions; to assign their limits, and settle controversies that may happen be

tween them; and shall have power under their respective seals, and the sign manuel of their respective grand, or de. puty grand high priests, kings and scribes, (or their legal proxies) attested by their respective secretaries, to consti. tute new chapters of royal arch masons, and lodges of most excellent, past and mark master masons, within their res. pective jurisdictions.

SECT. 5. The grand and deputy grand high priests severally, shall have the power and authority, whenever they shall decm it expedient (during the recess of the grand chapter of which they are officers) to grant letters of dispensation, under their respective hands, and private seals, to a competent number of petitioners, (possessing the qualifications required by the 9th section of the ed article) empowering them to open a chapter of royal arch masons, and lodge of most excellent, past, and mark master masons for a certain specified term of time; provided, that the said term of time shall not extend beyond the next meeting of the grand chapter of the state in which such dispensation shall be granted; and provided further, that the same fees as are required by this constitution for warrants, shall be first deposited in the hands of the grand treasurer. And in all cases of such dispensations, the grand or deputy grand high priests respectively, who may grant the same, shall make report thereof, at the next stated meeting of the grand chapter of their respective jurisdictions, when the said grand chapters, respectively, may either continue or recall the said dispensations, or may grant the petitioners a warrant of constitution: and in case such warrant shall be granted, the fees first deposited, shall be credited in payment for the same; but if a warrant should not be granted, nor the dispensation continued, the said fees shall be refunded to the petitioners, excepting only such part thereof as shall have been actually expended by means of their application.

Sect. 6. The several state grand chapters shall possess authority upon the institution of new royal arch chapters, or lodges of mark masters, within their respective jurisdictions, to require the payment of such fees as they may deem expedient and proper; which said fees shall be advanced and paid into the treasury, before a warrant or charter shall be issued,

SECT. 7. No warrant shall be granted for instituting lodges of most excellent, or past masters, independent of a chapter of royal arch masons.

Secr. 8, The grand chapters severally shall have pow. er to require from the several chapters and lodges under their respective jurisdictions, such reasonable proportion of sums, received by them for the exaltation or advancement of candidates, and such certain annual sums from their respective members, as by their ordinances or regulations shall hereafter be appointed: all which said sums or dues shall be made good, and paid annually, by the said chapters and lodges respectively, into the grand treasury of the grand chapter, under which they hold their authority, on or before the first day of the respective annual meetings of the said grand chapters.

Secr. 9. No warrant for the institution of a new chapter of royal arch masons shall be granted, except upon the petition of nine regular royal arch masons; which petition shall be accompanied with a certificate from the chapter nearest to the place where the new chapter is intended to be opened, vouching for the moral character and masonic abilities of the petitioners, and recommending to the grand chapter, under whose authority they act, to grant their prayer. And no warrant for the institution of a lodge of mark master masons shall be granted, except upon the petition of at least five regular mark master masons, accompanied by vouchers from the nearest lodge of that degree, similar to those required upon the institution of a chapter.

SECT. 10. The grand secretaries of the state grand chapters, shall severally make an annual communication to each other, and also to the general grand secretary, containing a list of grand officers, and all such other matters as may be deemed necessary for the mutual information of the said grand chapters. And the said grand secretaries shall also regularly transmit to the general grand secretary a copy of all their by-laws and regulations.

SECT. 11. Whenever there shall have been three, or more royal arch chapters instituted in any state, by virtue of authority derived from this constitution, a grand chapter may be formed in such state, (with the approbation of one or more of the general grand officers) by the high priests, kings and scribes of the said chapters, who shall be authorized to elect the grand officers. Provided always, that no new state grand chapter shall be formed until after the expiration of one year from the establishment of the junior chapter in such state.

SECT. 12. The several grand and deputy grand high priests, kings and scribes, for the time being, of the seve.

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